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Tapas @ Kukui'ula

457 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Tapas / Small Plates
Top Tags:
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Groups

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Appealing small plate dishes define the experience at Tapas @ kukui'ula. This neighborhood culinary outpost is a popular pick for seafood-centric cuisine. Helmed by Chef Kristin, this bustling restaurant offers flavorful tapa alongside refreshing cocktails in spacious surrounds that feature a mix of contemporary and rustic décor. Menu highlights include the Miso butterfish, pork belly French fries, kalbi beef and the corn beef hash.

Tapas @ kukui'ula is a nice pick if you're looking for a fun evening out with friends. The restaurant's laid back vibe lends itself well to birthdays and work parties. Diners rave about the ambiance, friendly priced menu and cocktails. Visit during the happy hour and explore the restaurant's famous Sangria menu. Tapas @ kukui'ula is open for lunch and dinner Monday through Sunday.

Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Tapas / Small Plates, Seafood, Organic
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Hours of operation

Dinner: Daily 5:00pm-9pm

Daily 5:00pm - 10pm During Peak Season
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Phone number
(808) 742-7117
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Payment options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
Jean Marie Josselin
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Private party facilities
Josselin"s Tapas Bar and Grill is ideal for large groups. Great Social atmosphere!
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Private party contact
Andrew Ha: (808) 742-7117
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Please contact us about catering options.
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Cross street
Poipu Rd.
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Parking details
Free Parking Available in "The Shops at Kukui"ula" located near the round-about on the Sunny South Shore in Poipu.
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Dancing, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 457 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.1  based on all time ratings
Noise · Moderate
85% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OpenTable Diner (Hawaii)
1.0  Dined on August 18, 2016

This restaurant closed quite a while ago. Who is supposed to keep this site current?

OpenTable Diner (Hawaii)
3.0  Dined on May 18, 2016

We had booked this restaurant in advance (not necessary) and arrived only to be told that there was no liquor licencing available so would have to buy our own liquor and bring it in. Was weird that we hadn't been pre-warned as we had a booking.

We felt that the service was a little intense/overbearing and apparent as opposed to streamlined/subtle. I barely had time to finish my main before the waiter had taken my dates plate and asked us if we wanted desert. The service was awkward as I think due to the absence of alcohol service there were a lot of people with nothing to do.

Food was good but I wasn't overly impressed with the restaurant as a whole.

OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on May 17, 2016

This was our third time to dine here. Party of 5 foodies very satisfied. Everything was nicely prepared and the staff was very pleasant. We visit each year when in Kauai & look forward to returning.

vipLuv2eat (Naples)
4.0  Dined on May 17, 2016

Sad note--we ate there two nights in a row May 17-18,2016.
The original owner who holds the lease from A & B has pulled the liquor license and has given notice to current manager and outstanding executive chef.
We are disappointed that this restaurant is on life support and hope the staff finds another location with less rent and overhead. Good luck!

OpenTable Diner (Minneapolis)
1.0  Dined on May 16, 2016

Terrible food. This place has gone downhill with the new ownership. Good was bland and overpriced. Worst meal of the week.

OpenTable Diner (Hawaii)
1.0  Dined on May 7, 2016

That atmosphere and servers were nice, but honestly the food just wasn't that good especially for the price you have to pay. The duck tacos were terrible and should be taken off the menu.

vipMike (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on May 5, 2016

Excellent selection of dishes, very well prepared. Love the service and the staff.
I like the wine list as well.
I'd love to see this place get remodeled with a more open air design.

vipdsobel (San Francisco)
3.0  Dined on May 1, 2016

Place was nearly empty. Food was unremarkable and disappointing.

OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on April 29, 2016

We had a great meal here. The standout dishes for us were the roasted mushrooms and the crusted fish. The mushrooms had a great smoky flavour from the roasting, which was enhanced by the bacon in the dish. The crusted fish of the day for us was a crab-crusted moonfish and it was fantastic.

vipFood4all (Sacramento)
5.0  Dined on April 28, 2016

Fine selection of Asian Fusion dishes. Everything was fantastic.

vipFlightNight (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on April 21, 2016

Tapas was a very pleasant surprise for dinner - the tapas each one better than the last one - yes we had favorites, but could not deny how good each one was as a "different option" from the last. Over the top was the Sangria cart - blueberry, regular or lichee nut - mixing the regular and lichee was outstanding! Great service, decently priced and a return trip planned!

vipMisty (San Francisco)
3.0  Dined on April 9, 2016

We came here wanting a light meal with some variety. The food was creative, but what we ordered just didn't meet expectations. The dressing on the salad was sour and the salad was wilted. The "kalbi" was sweet and was more a braised short rib than the Korean style ribs I was hoping for (but the risotto underneath was good). The chicken wings were lacking in flavor. The cocktail I had was excellent, though.

Cathydiner (San Francisco)
1.0  Dined on April 7, 2016

Over priced and small portions

vipwgwghw (Denver)
4.0  Dined on April 3, 2016

Service was very good. Food portions a bit more than we remember; we ordered 4 items, could have ordered 3.

OpenTable Diner (Hawaii)
5.0  Dined on April 1, 2016

Everything is good. Workers are good. Food is awesome. Great service

OpenTable Diner (Hawaii)
5.0  Dined on March 30, 2016

We are Kauai residents and this is our favorite restaurant!

vipbear (Denver)
4.0  Dined on March 24, 2016

Tapas interior is nice. But don't expect something beach front. Good is exceptional and there is great variety

vipQuin (Palm Springs)
5.0  Dined on March 24, 2016

We have sampled the majority of the tapas and have not found one we do not like. The service is outstanding.

vipOpenTable Diner (Seattle)
5.0  Dined on March 9, 2016

Liked it so much we will visit again. Their "happy hour" is a great value as it is in the whole restaurant until 6:30 pm with 25% off any menu item along with special drink prices. $7 sangria poured from a roving Sangria cart was wonderful. Two of us shared the arugula salad, nan bread with burrata, arugula and roasted tomatoes and the lamb porterhouse chops. All very good and plenty of food to satisfy.

OpenTable Diner (Las Vegas)
5.0  Dined on March 2, 2016

There are no words to describe how amazing our dinner was. The food was outstanding and the sangria was amazing. We ordered six different plates, two desserts and four sangrias. We went during happy hour so we got 25% off our bill, so the price was fantastic. Our server was Kawai and she was phenomenal! She answered all our questions, frequently checked on us and suggested items we should try. The okinawan sweet potato & kabocha pumpkin tortellini was one of our favorite plates, although all of the plates were exceptional. Can't wait to get back there again.

vipMysticsMom (Hawaii)
5.0  Dined on February 29, 2016

I was a little concerned about my first visit under new ownership, but I was very pleased to see only improvements! As always, the food and service were superb! All in all, the price is reasonable for the quality of the food. Everything is fresh and local, and the presentation and taste are both worth every dollar.

vipWendy (Milwaukee)
5.0  Dined on February 24, 2016

Fabulous assortment of small plates and sangrias (and beer).
We had duck confit tacos, pumpkin tortelloni, short ribs with beet risotto, crab crusted opah & ahi poke nachos. The tortelloni and opah (fresh catch) were my favorites but everything was delicious, fresh and nicely presented. For a small plates restaurant, I was impressed with the portion sizes.

vipOpenTable Diner (Minneapolis)
3.0  Dined on February 15, 2016

The food was pretty good but the prices were way too high for what you got, even by Hawaii standards.

OpenTable Diner (Hawaii)
4.0  Dined on February 14, 2016

Came on Valentine's Day for dinner. Had a great time, food service and drinks were all amazing. Wish we had this restaurant back on Maui!

ABCD (New York Area)
1.0  Dined on February 11, 2016

Probably the worst restaurant i have ever eaten in Hawaii.

Grouper (Hawaii)
2.0  Dined on February 8, 2016

We read about this restaurant in the guide book. Used to be called Josselin's Tapas, now just Tapas. Turns out that Mr Josselin moved to Kapaa and opened JO2 (which is phenomenal).
This place seems to be still sorting out its theme. The food is supposed to be tapas, but the prices are in the $30 range for a full entree. We only ordered 2 dishes, each about $20, which seems awfully high for what should be a tapas size plate. Many seafood options (appropriate for Hawaii), but heavy advertising for the sangria, which doesn't fit with seafood. Similarly, the light fixtures are beautiful artistic big drum chandeliers, but the tables are bare and the chairs are stark. Looks like the food court at an airport or a mall, under hotel lobby fixtures. The loud disco music didn't help the atmosphere either. Lastly, I think every single employee in the entire organization stopped by our table to ask how things were going . Literally got interrupted every 5 minutes. There weren't very many customers in the restaurant so maybe they had time to spare, but I would prefer to eat my dinner in peace.

vipchefmimi (Salt Lake City)
3.0  Dined on February 7, 2016

My husband and I were so excited to dine at this restaurant, because we had enjoyed a fabulous dining experience four years prior. What we didn't realize is that it had been sold by chef Jean-Marie Josselin, and was in the hands of another, less experienced chef, albeit trained by him. So now it's called Tapas, but there's still confusion in the name online. The space upstairs was once so beautiful, but now it needs a re-do. There used to be a sangria cart which was fun. They said they're maybe going to bring that back. We're used to fine dining but the prices for each tapas was overly expensive. We even witnessed people leaving after checking out the menu. Prices that belong at a nice hotel's main restaurant perhaps. My husband ordered chicken tenders in a "spicy" sauce, and they were horribly overcooked. We asked for some sauce for dipping, and got a little bowl with about 1 tablespoon of sauce. If properly cooked they would have been okay. The rest of the food was great, but it just wasn't the same as before. I guess it's not supposed to be, but the chef needs to figure out just exactly what she's aiming for - is it an extension of Josselin's or something completely new and her own. Sad, and I'm rarely disappointed in good restaurants. I would call this overall fair.

vipLeeHP (New York Area)
5.0  Dined on February 7, 2016

Found this through open table while driving back to our hotel from a day of sight seeing. Tucked away in the shopping center was this hidden gem. The service was excellent, They served my favorite wine and the food was amazing. The best part was the enthusiasm of the staff. They were excited about the menu options and shared that energy with the diners.

OpenTable Diner (Seattle)
2.0  Dined on February 3, 2016

Went with a group of 7. Ordered 12 tapas with an average price of $30 per tapa. Tapas are less than 2 servings.

vipLarsB (Hawaii)
5.0  Dined on February 1, 2016

Strongly recommended: burrata and arugula salad, Kauai shrimp tempura dynamite, Okinawa sweet potato and kabochi pumpkin tortellini, pork belly, miso butterfish. Red sangria.